JAN 01] COVENTRY BLAZE BNL MATCH REPORT
Coventry Blaze 6
Slough Jets 2
Blaze rounded off a good weekend’s work with a second win over the
Slough Jets at the Skydome.
6-2 scoreline reflected the level of control the Blaze had
throughout the match. Towards the end of the second period it looked
as if they were going to run away with it, but most of the final
section of the game was a stalemate.
Jets, reeling from an 8-2 home defeat on Saturday, started the game
as they meant to go on: with one of their players in the penalty
early power play saw the Blaze take the lead through Mike Shewan,
assisted by Samuelsson and Dumas.
this point the Jets were playing catch-up. The only time the Blaze
looked vulnerable was on the break and Barry Hollyhead, preferred in
the net for this game, had to make a save in the sixth minute from a
the meantime, Knights had narrowly missed with a stinging shot after
a sharp one-two exchange with Tasker, and Tasker himself also went
power play to Blaze saw Mats Samuelsson whip in the first of several
of his trademark exocet shots. He wasn’t to find the net all night, but must
have given the Slough net minder food for thought, as well as a
bruise or two.
script went off kilter at this point: despite having an advantage on
the ice, Coventry Blaze let their lead slip. Hollyhead blocked Mitch
Grant’s shot, but it trickled past him and into the net.
the Jets’ collection of Jasons spending much of the game in the
box (Kendall and Reilly got 12 minutes between them), the Blaze were
frequently at an advantage, but not always able to make this count.
Shaun Johnson broke through the defence lines to put the home side
in front at 14.39, with assists from Tom Watkins and Marc Twaite.
a long-range Slough effort trickled into the net at the beginning of
the second period, Mitch Grant firing the successful shot to make
the score 2-2.
ushered in a period of uncertainty as the Blaze tried to regain
their advantage. The pressure slowly grew, with Knights, Eley and
Kelham all going close.
teams were reduced by one player after Jason Kendall and Mathias
Soderstom were sent to the box when the goal of the game was scored.
passed to Knights who flicked the puck through the Jets, clinically
slicing through their defence and leaving Claude Dumas through on
the net. The new signing made no mistake, and the Blaze regained the
lead on 29.14.
captain Hilton Ruggles demonstrated his inconsistency, limply
missing an easy shot, before firing in an excellent effort that
narrowly went wide, before the Blaze sealed the game.
Johnson dummied the Slough Jets defence by tapping the puck to his
left for Tom Watkins to fire in the fourth goal of the night, with
Marc Twaite getting the second assist on 35.28.
game was sealed on 38.21 with a sharp goal involving most of the
team. The puck whizzed around in front of the Jets’ goal while
Kendall was again resting in the box.
and Shewan claimed the assists as Tasker gave the Blaze a 5-2 lead.
looked as if Coventry had put themselves in a position to run riot
in the third period. But the game became scrappy, and Hollyhead was
called into action several times to make good saves.
as it seemed the players were content to hit each other, instead of
the puck, with queues almost forming for the penalty box, Kurt
Irvine woke the moribund crowd up with ten seconds remaining.
fluent breakthrough the Jets line saw him scoring from long range
down the left, with Shaun Yardley claiming the assist.
routine win, but with a three goal deficit to overturn in the ntl
cup semi final again Guildford Flames on Wednesday, and defending
champions Fife Flyers visiting next Sunday, the crowd will have to
give the Blaze more support if the victories are going to turn into
on goal: 41-18
Dumas 1+1; Johnson 1+1; Shewan 1+1; Watkins 1+1; Irvine 1+0; Tasker
1+0; Samuelsson 0+3; Knights 0+2; Twaite 0+2; Yardley 0+1.
Net - Hollyhead 18/2
Grant 2+0; Dailey 0+1; Gallace 0+1; Pinnington 0+1. Net - Gallace 41/6